Thessaloniki, as a glittering Balkan capital, has always received the generous offerings of the fertile land surrounding it. Furthermore, as a multi-cultural city, it has always collected goodies and delicacies from all over the world. These products can still be discovered in its traditional markets, making the city’s visitors curious, marvelled and perhaps a little bit jealous.
A short walk to the new Modiano arcade market, the Vlali market (Kapani), the Vatikioti market at Athonos square, the Flower market (Louloudadika), the Bezesteni, the Malakopi arcade or the Bit Bazaar, will unveil a true feast of colours, aromas and tastes.
If you are a visitor don’t even think of leaving this city without having tasted the local sesame bread (koulouri), the famous cream bougatsa (filo pastry) and the Panorama triangles filled with fresh cream.
Search for the sweet yellow cheese from nearby Sohos (kaseri Sohou), and the Dorkada yoghourt, the ever-present values bringing up valuable childhood memories.
Also famous are the huge, crimson cherries from Ossa, hand-picked in June, and the exquisite beans and oregano from Arethoussa.
If you find yourself on an excursion to Agios Antonios or Kalamoto, do not neglect to buy pasta and pies made with traditional techniques.
Finally, you will be pleasantly surprised by well-known wines produced around the big city, both in its meridian and its mountainous areas. You will discover them using their colour, their aroma and their intoxicating taste as your guide, or by looking for the P.G.I. Thessaloniki, Epanomi, Messimvria and Vertisko on their label.
by Maria Netsika (chemist/oenologist, wine writer and author)